Glauco Sagebin Trio: When Baden Meets Trane

When Baden Meets Trane is an apt title for this trio effort from Brazilian pianist Glauco Sagebin, who gathers inspiration not just from his homeland’s sambas and bossas but also from the swing of jazz.

Using John Coltrane and Brazilian composer Baden Powell as chief influences, Sagebin, bassist Santi Debriano and drummer Paulo Braga play 11 tunes and negotiate a common ground between Baden’s bossa nova and Trane’s spiritual swing. Five of the tracks are Sagebin originals that stand strong against the songs by prominent composers, with Jobim’s “Luiza,” the Gershwins’ “Fascinating Rhythm” and Johnny Mercer’s “Laura” among them.

The references in the title cut are obvious, but on the rest of the When Baden Meets Trane it’s difficult to tell where Trane starts and Baden takes over. Such is the success of Glauco Sagebin’s integration of the two cultures. “Early Departure” bristles with the piano and bass accompanying Paulo Braga’s expressive drum bursts. He’s not playing pure Brazilian or swing, Sagebin’s working both sides against the other and making the rhythm the star of the show. Sagebin’s solos on this cut remind us that the piano is in fact a percussion instrument. The only pure bossa nova on the CD, “Nada Como Ter Amor,” is played traditionally. Sagebin’s soloing sets it apart with the kind of harmonic sophistication that leaves spaces to let the beats influence the notes as opposed to the other way around. Felix Contreras